The economic impact of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup tournament held in Canada far exceeded original expectations.
New data indicates the six-city, month-long tournament created $493.6 million in economic activity across the country, which is 46 per cent more than the original projection of $337 million.
In 2011, FIFA selected Canada as the host nation for both the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and FIFA U-20 tournaments. According to the Canadian Soccer Association, the cost to host both tournaments was $216 million and the investment generated $249 million in GDP plus $97.6 million in tax revenues across all three levels of government. This includes $46 million for the federal government, $36.7 million for various provincial governments, and $14.9 million for the municipal governments of the host cities.
“On behalf of Canada Soccer, we would like to thank all of our funding partners for their support to successfully stage the largest single sporting event ever hosted in Canada,” said Victor Montagliani, President Canada Soccer, in a statement.
“Without their early commitment to the hosting of these competitions and their outstanding support throughout, along with that of the Canadian soccer community, we could not have had such a profound impact on not only our economy, but also on our country and women’s sport in Canada and around the world.”
Nearly a quarter of the economic spinoffs were recorded in British Columbia. A total of $118.8 million was generated in the province, with $82.9 million coming from the City of Vancouver. Eight matches and the championship final were played at B.C. Place Stadium, where a total of 356,899 spectators were recorded including a single game attendance of 54,027 fans during the match between Canada and England – a record for a Canadian national team of any sport played on home soil.
B.C. Place Stadium in Vancouver recorded the highest average attendance amongst all of the host cities, with an average of 39,655 attendees for all nine matches. 53,341 fans, largely American, witnessed the United States defeat Japan 5-2 in the championship final.
A record 1,353,506 spectators attended the tournament’s 52 matches played between 24 teams, up from 845,751 spectators, 32 matches and 16 teams in Germany four years ago.